The ride through Arches National Park from the entrance to the north end of the park is approximately 18 miles. Although this might seem like a short ride when thinking along the lines of mileage, keep in mind of the sights that are going to make this 18 miles an all day event!
One of the first sights you will see on this scenic drive is the South Park Avenue Trailhead. If you don't have too much time to visit Arches, you won't need to worry with many of these stops. You will not have to travel far to experience South Park Avenue! This is, as many stops in Arches are, one of the most amazing places to try to capture pictures. If you do have some time to take a hike, walk the South Park Avenue Trail to the North Park Avenue Trailhead (1 mile: One way). If you don't have the time to walk this trail, you can drive a little further along this scenic route to get to the North Park Avenue Trailhead! North Park Avenue features the famous Three Gossips and Tower of Babel.
After you have spent some time at the Park Avenue area, drive along to The Windows Section of Arches NP. In this area you will see sights such as Balanced Rock to Parade of Elephants. Can you see the elephants?
Once you have completed The Windows Section, it is time to head north to the Delicate Arch Viewpoint. Also along the road to this viewpoint is a piece of history called Wolfe Ranch. John Wesley Wolfe, and his son, Fred, settled here in 1888. The hike to Delicate Arch is not located at the viewpoint parking area, but is located at the Wolfe Ranch parking area.
Moving north along our scenic ride, you will next find Fiery Furnace. Try to be in this area around sunset if you have the time. Watch the colors of the red sandstone turn into a Fiery Furnace!
Next stop is the north part of Arches National Park where the campground is located along with the Devils Garden area. Devils Garden features Landscape Arch, Broken Arch, Skyline Arch and many more! So as you can see, this 18 mile road from the entrance to the north point of Arches has an abundance of sights to keep you entertained all day. There are three picnic areas and about 6 pit toilets along the way for your convenience. As Arches' popularity has increased, people have begun to park in areas that damage plants and sometimes endanger other visitors. Please park in established lots only. Generally, parking spaces are easier to find before 9 a.m. and after 7 p.m.
The road system in Arches passes many outstanding natural features. As Arches' popularity has increased, people have begun to park in areas that damage plants and sometimes endanger other visitors. Please park in established lots only. Generally, parking spaces are easier to find before 9 a.m. and after 7 p.m. If your time at Arches will be limited, try one of the following itineraries:
Drive to the Windows Section and see some of the park's largest arches. (Add one-half hour to stroll beneath either North Window or Double Arch.). Alternatively, drive to the Delicate Arch Viewpoint and see the world's most famous arch, a mile distant. Stop at Wolfe Ranch on your way back and imagine what it would have been like to homestead this relatively barren area in the late 1800s.
Do both of the above!
Drive all of the paved park roads, spending ten minutes at each viewpoint, and be sure to visit the Windows Section, Wolfe Ranch and the Delicate Arch Viewpoint.